– About 800 repentant members of Boko Haram will get trained by the Nigerian government
– The penitent jihadists will undergo deradicalization
– A list of 12 different trades have been lined up for the ex-Islamists
The Federal Government said on Monday, August 1, that it has put in place all that is necessary for the commencement of a rehabilitation program of about 800 repentant Boko Haram members within Nigeria’s northeastern region.
Brig-Gen Bamidele Shaffa, Coordinator of Operation Safe Corridor for Repentant Boko Haram, told a news conference in Gombe that the repentant Boko Haram members will soon arrive in Gombe for rehabilitation, noting that all the necessary arrangements had been put in place to commence operation at the rehabilitation camp.
According to Xinhua, the repentant militants would undergo a de-radicalization process in the camp, which would prepare them to go back to their various communities.14 federal government agencies including the security personnel would work in the camp. He said the former militants would be trained in 12 different trades and vocations. Shaffa said the National Directorate of Employment would provide all the facilities for the training.
Meanwhile, the National Emergency Management said it has presented relief materials to the Nigerian Army for the rehabilitation of repentant Boko Haram insurgents in Gombe State. Sani Sidi, the Director-General of the agency, confirmed the presentation of the materials during a courtesy call on Governor Ibrahim Dankwambo of the state in Gombe.
He said the items were food and non-food materials aimed to support the efforts of the military in the ongoing rehabilitation and de-radicalization of the Boko Haram insurgents in the country. He commended the government and members of the security agencies for the selfless services of ensuring peace and stability in the country. Shafa said various agencies of the federal government had partnered with the military for success of the de-radicalization program.
He said Gombe state happened to be the first to host the exercise based on the facilities on the ground, unlike the initial plan scheduled for Jigawa. Shafa said any moment from now the repentant Boko Haram insurgents would be deployed to Gombe for the commencement of the program. Executive Secretary of Human Rights Commission Bem Angure commended the federal government for ensuring that peace was gradually returning to the country. He also commended the Nigerian Army for its anti-insurgency operations, adding that the military is making the country proud in that direction.
On his part, the governor said the state government would assist to ensure the success of the program. Dankwambo urged the people of the state to always be vigilant and to report any suspicious movement or persons and to collaborate with security agencies to ensure lasting peace. The northeast region has been a stronghold of the extremist group Boko Haram and has been frequently raided in the past six years.
In past months, The Nigerian government has launched several military operations to eliminate the terrorist threat. Boko Haram, which seeks to impose strict Islamic law in northern Nigeria, has been blamed for some 20,000 deaths and displacing of more than 2.6 million people since 2009. Meanwhile, thousands of innocent men, women and children held captive by Boko Haram terrorists in the Sambisa forest, a key terrorists’ hideout for years, are struggling to survive as they face death from hunger.
The latest information on the state of affairs was provided by a person who has recently escaped from captivity. The anonymous escapee told newsmen that many people are dying daily due to lack of food in the forest, and urged the army to force their rescue operations.
According to the escapee, Boko Haram Amirs and their wives live in the tunnels. The source also reported about an unspecified number of women and children being moved by the insurgents into the Chad Republic.